One For the Road

by on April 11, 2009 :: 0 comments

Trains provide both
sleepers and coach seats
to stowaways with dreams
of roads that lead somewhere
to anywhere
but here.

In the boisterous club car,
a reborn
born again
recalls tales of Hell’s Angel days,
war stories of death, mayhem
passion, psycho-analysis and visions
of a higher power
and the end of all days.

without notice
and seek out the loneliness of the night.
Through the windows to the world
of high plains and misery
I pray for mercy
from his pickled brain ravings
and retellings
of his truth
that is easier said
than heard.

the pig-tailed muscle man,
shake hands with his brethren
and takes to the stairwell
before bumping aside the young one
in tighter than tight faded jeans
that I wish I could touch
even though
the girl
is young enough to be my daughter.

As the car hits rails
junked with rocks and snow
the redhead falls hard against the stationary table
and yelps like a scolded puppy
before I pull her to safety
with my strong arms
and soon afterwards
into my bunk and army hard cot
as we listen to
the clicky-clack
to the paddy-wack
of the rails
through gin-soaked words
where somehow
she finds a place in my heart
I thought was

For a few moments
I’m sixteen again
in the backseat of the parent’s
Mustang convertible
in the drive-in theater
where all bad boys and girls
played Russian roulette with love.

When we finish our games
and dawn pokes out in the horizon
she speaks of school,
a better life,
and excuses herself
for her next stop
on the sunrise highway.

We kiss the newness off
before she disappears
down the private car for the privileged few.

As I follow her
with my eyes trained on her rhythmic movements
I realize that crying is for children
who never have enough candy.
My sweet life
is one for the road
and the little voice
reminds me
it’s time to move along, move along, move along…

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